Plea for support to revive sugar industry
Thursday, July 24, 2014
CANEFARMERS, canecutters, lorry operators and mill workers have been urged to rally behind the National Federation Party and give it a chance to revive the sugar industry for them.
Party candidate Jagannath Sami made the plea during the party’s manifesto announcement in Suva on Monday.
Mr Sami said a lot had been said about the sugar industry in Fiji — its problems, its politics and its uncertain future.
“It is hard to imagine Fiji without the sugar industry. In one way or the other it touches many aspects of our society, more particularly at the grassroots level.
“It is estimated about 20 per cent of Fiji’s population, or about 170,000 people rely directly or indirectly on the sugar industry for their income and livelihood.”
Mr Sami claimed that the industry had declined in cane production by 50 per cent from 3.2 million tonnes in 2006 to 1.6 million tonnes in 2013.
He claimed that sugar production declined from 310,000 tonnes in 2006 to 170,000 tonnes last year as well as the decline in milling reliabilities and efficiencies.